19 thoughts on “Name That Animal


    This is a nutria. I saw a show on NatGeo about them this week. That was the first I’d heard of them.

    Since so many of you guessed muskrat, I looked up the differences between the two. A muskrat is not as large as a nutria (not that you could tell from this single photo of course) and they have a “long, rat-like tail that is flattened vertically”.

    A Nutria has several distinct features distinguishing it from the muskrat:

    *Muzzle is covered by white coarse hair
    *Tail is hairy and round (not compressed from side to side) and pointed at the tip
    *Hind legs are much longer than the front legs, giving them a hunched appearance when on land
    *Hind feet are webbed
    *Large incisors are yellow to orange-red

  2. There used to be a lot of nutria at Atlantic Beach, North Carolina.

    I saw one hit along the road once, and I thought it was a giant muskrat.

    Nutria means otter in Spanish. They call them coypu in Spanish.

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